All posts filed under: Germany


Monday Meal Review: Germany

THE SCENE My friend Amanda has the same philosophy as I do when it comes to kids and food: they’ll learn to love good food if you feed ’em good food. That doesn’t mean it’s always easy. Recently Ava’s been turning her nose up at anything that looks funny – green, purple – whatever. The girl is simply not interested. The other day I made her spinach ravioli and she didn’t want any part of it. After fifteen minutes of practically begging the girl to take a bite, I finally just asked her: “Why won’t you eat it? Because it’s green!?” Ava nodded her head violently. Then she laughed. Then, most incredibly, she took a bite. And, then, another. This week, as I spooned the mustard and pickle-filled beef rouladen and a small pile of red cabbage onto Ava’s plate, she looked skeptical. I thought I’d try the same tactic: to giggle at the unusual until she was curious enough to take a bite. Ava’s Corner: THE FOOD Mini Beef Rouladen [Recipe] What I liked most about …

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How to homebrew: German Altbier (Beer)

I know very little about beer. So little, in fact, that I’ve been known to drink it on ice. While I’ve been told this is an epic sin, I can’t help myself. There’s nothing better after a hot, sweaty bike ride in the summer than beer on ice. That being said, I thought our German Global Table was the perfect opportunity to take a stab at homebrewing. This  is my step-by-step eperience making German Altbier. I am using the Brewer’s Best kit which can be purchased at High Gravity in Tulsa, Oklahoma (you can also order from them online). If you purchase their kit, you’ll get the full instructions and my procedure might help along the way. At the very least, you’ll learn what not to do. They also have classes. This isn’t an ad, by the way. I bought my own kit. High Gravity did loan me a bucket though! Hurrah for that. Now… if I can just get over there to return it. Day 1: First lesson… Apparently one needs a giant pot …

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Mini Beef Rouladen

Serves 2-4 Welcome to Germany! Mustard, pickles, onions, bacon, and the beefiest beef you can find – all tucked into a luscious gravy and served with red cabbage [Recipe] and potatoes. First, a few tips. Rouladen should be made with wide strips of tough beef -the kind that benefits from slow cooking. Typically this is round steak, but my supermarket only had chuck roast. The meat should be about 4″ wide and very long and thin. Have your butcher cut it for you. If you think of the meat like a brick, they should be cutting strips from the widest part of the brick. They’ll only be able to do it if they have a slicer. Our butcher didn’t have a slicer, so they couldn’t cut wide slices – they had to cut from the skinny side. No problem – we just made mini rouladen. When you get it home pound it as thin as you can. Only simmer the rouladen until the beef is tender. You might want to make one or two extra …

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Eastern European Red Cabbage

Serves 6 There’s one thing I know for sure. This recipe is served all over Germany and other eastern European countries. You almost don’t have to look at a menu before ordering it (unless, of course, you’re eating at a Chinese restaurant in Germany). Red cabbage is super simple to make -the hardest part is cutting the cabbage. And that’s not very hard. Unless you don’t have a knife. Ingredients: 1 head red cabbage, cored and sliced thinly (about 3 lbs) 1 small onion, thinly sliced 1 cup water 1/2 cup vinegar 1/4 cup sugar 1 bay leaf Salt pepper Method: Today is the day you get to take out your anxiety on a small purple cabbage. It’s loads of fun. First, core and slice it. Next, add it to a large pot with sliced onions, sugar, vinegar, and a bay leaf. A little water, salt and pepper balance things out. Simmer for 1 1/2 hours or until the cabbage is as tender as you’d like, tossing occasionally. I found tongs the best way to …

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I’ll take my meat with cookies, thank you.

Pull up your chair to the German dinner table and you’ll likely eat a heaping plate of meat and potatoes. You might even encounter a crunchy gingersnap or a soft, spicy gingerbread cookie [Recipe]. What you might not expect, however, is that your cookies could be in your meat dish. That’s right. The German dish called Sauerbraten is a slow-cooked pot roast, loaded up with vinegar and a rich, brown gravy thickened with nothing more than cookies. But let’s start at the beginning, shall we? First, the meat hangs out in a vinegar bath for a week and a half, along with a healthy sprinkle of pickling spices. Second, the meat is slow-cooked with the vinegar mixture in a hot oven. Third, the vinegar mixture is strained and simmered with finely crushed gingersnaps to make a spicy, tangy brown gravy. Amazing. I must eat this dish as soon as possible. What about you? Would you try it? Happy Fun Fact Friday! Have a great weekend… hope you have something fun planned. Photo of Sauerbraten: Johann …

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German Tree Cake | Baumtorte / Baumkuchen

This is my favorite cake. All 21 layers of it. It has been since my mitten-wearing years. My mom used this intricately layered almond and chocolate cake as an activity for us kids – something to keep us busy on rainy mornings, when crayons had lost their interest. It is single-handedly responsible for my obsession with almond paste (and it’s sweeter counterpart, marzipan). The original recipe might as well be called “the dance of dirty bowls.” I took a hacksaw to the method, removing five extra bowls. Your baby soft hands will thank you. The best part? No cake goodness was harmed in the streamlining of this recipe. NOTE: You need two days to make this cake because the cake needs to chill in the fridge overnight. Serves 12 Ingredients: All ingredients should be room temperature 1 1/2 cups almond paste, tightly packed (12 oz) 6 Tbsp half & half 1 1/2 sticks butter (12 tbsp), softened 1 cup sugar 10 eggs, separated (put the whites in a bowl big enough to whip them up to …

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Menu: Germany

If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed at the thought of spring cleaning, try making these recipes, especially the beer and cake. Good luck. If you’re as clumsy as a frog, as I am, you’ll be cleaning up half-fermented beer splatters and chocolate drips for days. Squeak, shluck, squeak, shluck. That’s the sound of my sneakers on sticky tiles. Shudder. Of course, the final result allows you to eat and drink your sorrows away, so there’s that. Or you could just not be clumsy in the first place. Your choice. Mini Beef Rouladen [Recipe] Thin strips of beef spread with spicy mustard and rolled up around diced onions, bacon, and a piece of pickle. Served in a red wine gravy. Eastern European Red Cabbage [Recipe] The easy, ever popular cabbage dish – simply slice and cook with a bit of vinegar, sugar, and water. The bay leaf is for good luck. How to homebrew: German Altbier (Beer) [Recipe] This isn’t so much a recipe as a photo journal of my first attempt at brewing beer with ingredients …

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About the food of Germany

I first went to Germany for a basketball tournament. I’d just made Captain of the J.V. team, thanks in great part to the small size of our school rather than any particular skill. That weekend we played with “heart” as our coach liked to say, losing by a mere 12 points – a definite improvement since the beginning of the season when we had lost several games by well over 30 points. That kind of loss is a creaming and, unfortunately, not the kind that ends up in cake. After Friday’s game my host family took me on a walking tour of downtown Düsseldorf. The air was crisp and dark – twinkling with the occasional string of lights. Our feet echoed along the cobblestones. Just when my eyes began to droop, the street opened up into a big plaza with a lively outdoor holiday market. A chorus huddled together in a gazebo, their songs crystallizing on the frosty air as they overlooked dozens of booths filled with food, beer [Recipe], wine, and handmade crafts. This was a …

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